Last Updated:

How to Start a Furniture Business in Kenya

The first thing that catches anyone’s attention after visiting any home is the furniture in it. The color, quality and make of the chairs, tables and wall units make the lounge beautiful. The comfort of the chairs can makes one feel relaxed. Therefore, every carpenter should strive to make the best furniture.

The furniture making business is a lucrative business in Kenya that does not require a lot of startup capital. You only need to have the necessary skills and passion. The quality and beauty of your furniture will attract customers. Therefore, it is important that you capitalize on that. This is how you can start a profitable furniture business.

Get Carpentry Training

If you are the one who will be making furniture for your business, then you need to get training. There are many vocational institutions in Kenya where you can train in carpentry. Remember that customers want quality and unique furniture. You need to be highly skilled and make and incorporate creativity in furniture making. Ensure that you are always updated with current furniture trends.

If you don’t have the skills to make furniture, you can employ a carpenter to be making furniture for your business. Alternatively, you can buy ready-made furniture for sale in your furniture business.

Get a Reliable Timber Supplier

If you are involved in the making of furniture, you need to find a reliable timber supplier. You can source timber from a logger or a timber yard. Make sure to use quality timber for your furniture products. Low quality timber makes poor quality furniture and customers will not buy your products. It would be best if you can use hard wood since its products are high quality and fetch more money.

Read also: How to start a timber yard business in Kenya. 

Get a Suitable Furniture Business Location   

The other thing is to find a suitable business location for your furniture business. The location should be easily accessible and visible from a far by passersby. You also need to have adequate space to place your furniture for display. Get a business location in a busy area like a town. The demand for furniture products is usually higher in towns compared to rural areas. It should also be in an area where it is easy to access timber. 

Acquire Business Permits

It is a legal requirement for any business operating in Kenya to get a business permit. You can get a business permit from the county government offices or the county council offices. Business permit fees vary from one county to the other, but it is between Ksh 5,000 and Ksh 10,000 a year.

Launch Your Furniture Business

Once everything is set up, you can launch your furniture business. At first, you will not have many customers until customers trust your skills. Strive to meet customer expectations to build a good business reputation. 

Some of the items you can be making include office furniture, school furniture and home furniture. They include sofa sets, tables, chairs, desks, beds, wall units, wardrobes and cabinets. You can target schools, offices and homes.  

Market Your Furniture Business

You also need to market your business by displaying furniture or through a word mouth, or social media. With time, your business will start having frequent customers and become profitable. 

You can visit schools and ask them if they would like someone to help them in making and repairing school desks. Many times, desks and lockers get broken in schools and need repairs. You can grab the opportunity to increase your revenues. 

Read also: Quit teaching to start a furniture business. 

Cost of Starting a Furniture Business in Kenya

The cost of starting a furniture business depends on the nature of your business. For example, do you make furniture or do your buy ready-made furniture for resale?  It is cheaper if your business will be involved in the making furniture compared to buying ready-made furniture. It will also give you higher profits margins.

The cost of starting a furniture making business in Kenya is around Ksh 100,000. The following is startup capital breakdown.

  • Business permit – Ksh 8,000
  • Furniture yard rent – Ksh 10,000
  • Timber supplies - Ksh 20,000
  • Carpentry tools – Ksh 50,000
  • Others - Ksh 10,000

Carpentry Tools You Need to Start a Furniture Business 

You can start with the most basic tools before you can buy sophisticated tools. Some of the basic tools you would need include: 

  • Claw hammer 
  • Screwdrivers 
  • Hand plane 
  • Chisels 
  • Hand saw 
  • Tape measure 
  • Ruler 
  • Pencil 
  • Level 
  • Drill 

Is Furniture Business Profitable?

Furniture business is a profitable business if you have the right skills and creativity in making furniture. Customers want high quality and unique products. If you can deliver what customers are looking for, you will be getting lots of furniture orders. Your business location can also affect your business profitability. You can set a 40% profit margin above the cost of making furniture to cater for labour and other overhead costs.

Read also: How to start a welding fabrication business.

Conclusion

A furniture making business in Kenya is one of the businesses you can start and grow it to a profitable venture. With the carpentry skills and creativity, you can build a big brand in furniture making business. Stay updated with the current furniture trends and seek to meet customer expectations.